Sunday, September 09, 2007

Sunday with Ross Mackenzie: "Reflections on Murdoch's Purchase of The Journal"

After taking last week off for Labor Day, Ross Mackenzie, retired editor of the RTD Editorial Pages, is back in today's Richmond Times Dispatch with his response to the recent hand-wringing from liberal outlets in response to Rupert Murdoch's acquisition of The Wall Street Journal. He gives a recap of some of the more obvious groanings, such as MSNBC's columnist David Sweet bemoaning, "Murdoch will tarnish a journalistic jewel," and then takes them to task because of their hypocrisy:
Murdoch may know what too many in and out of the news business smugly refuse to concede -- that a public fed up with the obsessive liberalism of the mainline media yearns for conservative outlets and expression. How else to explain the popularity of talk radio, Fox News -- and, nota bene, the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal? So, yes, Murdoch may understand very well the success a healthy dose of conservatism -- or not-liberalism -- may bring.
He concludes his reflections with this:
In the view of those hostile to Murdoch's purchase of Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal, what's bad for "American journalism" and "our democracy" is not their definition of "fair and balanced" that has so contributed to driving journalism down -- but Murdoch's definition that has demonstrated so much success."
Indeed. I pray that Ross Mackenzie and his common sense stay around for a long time ... because a Sunday without him is just another Sunday. And the Times-Dispatch without him is just another newspaper.

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